How it works:
- Version 1: all taxis must use the meter except at the airport. However, there are some who will claim that the meter is down and hence charge you an inflated flat fare.
- Version 2: there have also been cases of rigged meters, which jump too fast or too much.
- Version 3: taking you on a longer route or driving though busy areas to inflate the fare.
- Version 4: currency switcheroo.
- Version 5: Chile-Peru tourist card scam.
Places to beware:
- Anywhere (e.g. tourist attractions, hotels, airport, transportation hubs)
What to do:
- Avoid: taxis at tourist spots (e.g. Patio Bellavista, Sky Costanera).
- Photo: take a photo of the taxi number and driver’s license.
- Overcharging: ensure meter is turned on or research a fair price to negotiate with – check taximetro.cl, your hotel/hostel staff or taxi booking apps (e.g. Beat, Safer Taxi, Easy Taxi, Uber).
- Longhauling: be very clear when communicating your destination. Check your phone’s GPS to see if you are headed in the correct direction, though detours may be taken to avoid jams.
- Rigged meter red flags: tampered/missing meter seal, only fare is displayed, driver clicking a hidden switch, driving slowly at a high speed area to prevent meter from jumping wildly.
- Alternative: GetYourGuide (best day tour platform in Europe) has 10+ transport options.